Back are the days when gloomy husbands become gloomier, toiling day and night to be able to afford the latest designer lawn brands — an absolute essential for the Pakistani summer wardrobe — for their wives.
Once a part of the same bandwagon, I was amongst the countless women dying to lay a finger on that much coveted Sana Safinaz lawn jora.
Yet, this winter has been a time of reflection and retrospection. It could possibly be my first season of finally being a graduate and also a working woman.
Whether it is indeed a part of growing up or simply realising what it means to be putting blood and sweat into a 9 to 6 working day, it has made me recognise, beyond a shadow of doubt that I am done losing sleep over lawn prints.
In style: The fashion lawn bubble
With the recent onset of mild spring and the premature, yet full-on launch of a famous brand’s lawn collection this year already, the ghosts of the past return to haunt me.
Women camping outside Saleem Fabrics Lahore the night before the release of a lawn collection, desperately exhausting every number in their phone books to find a contact within the store who could ‘reserve’ the suits for them before anyone could even set their eyes on them are some of the disturbing highlights from last year.
I, myself, had friends and family calling from abroad and hysterically beckoning me to go buy a bunch of joras for each of them since I happen to (fortunately or unfortunately) live at walking distance from Saleem Fabrics. I also remember their major disappointment in me when I failed to grab those in a sea of hostile lawn-hungry women.
Seriously, what’s going on?
Also read: Designer Lawn – worth a stampede?
With newer designers joining the ‘lobby’ every year, the lawn obsession continues to grow at an alarming rate. So much so, these exhibitions can prove to be injurious!
I see sneak peeks and teasers everywhere on social media. While one designer boasts the exotic BTS of their lawn shoot at the beaches of Thailand, the other is ecstatic about getting onboard Beren Saat, aka our favourite ‘Bihter’ from Ishq-e-Mamnoon fame to model for their brand.
Bollywood (and now Turk) celebs sporting mid-spring / pre-summer / summer / mid-summer collections — a mind-boggling muddle of lawns, if there ever was one.
What’s worse is that we’re forced to put up with new lengths and flairs and cuts every few years. As soon as we started getting comfortable with long, flowy kameezes and choori-daars, we were faced with this new fad of short shirts and cigarette pants.
While we’re still struggling with those, enter the sensuous ghagras and uber short cholis, introducing newer daily dilemmas. It wouldn’t come as a surprise if we wake up to billboards advertising lawn ghagra cholis next, making their way into everyday wardrobes soon. Imagine yourself at work in one.
No matter how embellished with tilla, dabka or mukesh, a lawn jora will always remain, well a lawn jora.
I crave yonder days of the 90s where a regular printed unstitched shirt from the ‘phattas’ of the lovely Liberty Market was as good as anything.
So I refuse to complicate my life because my daily outfit isn’t shimmery and glamorous enough for social media selfies and that #ootd hashtag (it took me a month to decipher this very thoughtful acronym for ‘outfit of the day’).
I refuse to throw my hard-earned money at clothing that will corrode in the summer perspiration or probably be too obsolete to be worn the following year.
I refuse to lose my sanity to the perpetually aggressive lawn craze this season.
Also read: Disrobing reality
When I say this, I don’t mean to deride or discourage women from adorning themselves or keeping up with trends, to each her own.
Neither do I, by any means, mean to cause offence to Pakistani designers, who do a wonderful job all year round. Kudos to them! Yet, a little consideration wouldn’t hurt – from their side, and ours.
Summer in Pakistan appears to be the right time to question what, not who, we are wearing. More importantly, the season brings a time of reflection on our generally increasing profligate lifestyles; ones we are so mindlessly endorsing.
I ask you, is it even worth it?